Volume 6-7



This double edition of Pinakotheke is devoted to the history and significance of the legacy left by the Mir iskusstva1 Society and coincides with the Societys hundredth anniversary.


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Grigorii Sternin (Moscow). Mir iskusstva in the time machine.

Sternin is a Doctor of Art, a leading specialist at the State Institute of Art and one of the best experts on Russian art at the cusp of the XIXXX centuries. In this article, he makes a correlation between the ability of the Mir iskusstva artists to imagine as if they were in various time periods all at once and the cultural consciousness we enjoy today.

Alla Rusakova (St. Petersburg) Mir iskusstva in Russian culture at the end of the XIX and beginning of the XX centuries.

Rusakova is a Doctor of Art and a senior specialist with the State Russian Museum. The article is devoted to the art situation in Russia and the role of Mir iskusstva artists from the end of the 1890s to 1906, the period when the Societys artists created their classic works.

Sergei Golynets (Ekaterinburg) Three different Mir iskusstva.

Golynets, a Candidate2 of Art and head of the Art History Department at the Urals State University, examines three stages in the history of the Mir iskusstva movement: the Diagilev period (18981906), the St. Petersburg period (19101924) and the emigre period (created in Paris in 1921). The humorous Ode to the Passing of the Great Fast by the artist Ivan Bilibin is included as a supplement to this article (with commentary from Golynets).

Iurii Molok (Moscow). The history of Mir iskusstva: an a to z of names. Comments on the A to Z by Mstislav Dobuzhinskii.

Molok is an art critic and expert in Russian graphic printing and design. His article is dedicated to interpreting the caricatures and poems of Dobuzhin-skii, which formed an A to Z of Mir iskusstva (1911, 1943), portraying all the members of the Society in an ironic light.

Iurii Gerchuk (Moscow) The books of a pampered century.

This art critic and specialist in book art analyses the printed masterpieces of Mir iskusstva, which he considers to be a new stage in the evolution of the book and which influenced the development of this art form over the whole of the XX century.
Irina Uvarova (St. Petersburg) And the merry travelling show closed down.... The author is a specialist in folk theatre. She traces how a type of travelling show Russian puppet theatre was embodied and transformed in works by Mir iskusstva artists, in particular, those of Aleksandr Benois.

Margarita Davydova (Moscow) Russians seasons: Lev Bakst in Russian Ballet performances in Paris

The author is a Candidate of Art, a senior specialist with the State Institute of Art and an expert in the study of Russian scenery. Here, she analyses the evolving style of Baksts sketches for the theatre between 19091912.

Natalia Guseva (St. Petersburg) Nikolai Svirskii, purveyor to the His Majestys Imperial Court, and Modern Art.

Guseva is a Candidate of Art, a senior specialist with the State Hermitage Museum and curator of the Furniture Collection. She addresses a little-known side of Mir iskusstva work: in January 1903, A.Benois, E.Lansere, L.Bakst, K.Korovin and A.Golovin took part in organising a gallery of interior designs in the neo-Russian and modern styles. The project was called the Modern Art Venture. Purveyor to the Imperial Court, Nikolai Svirskii, took part in making furniture and interiors, based on the artists sketches. The venture was financed by the well-known patrons of the arts, Prince Sergei Shcherbatov and Vladimir von Mekk.

Elena Bespalova (Moscow). Benois and Poiret.

Bespalova is an art critic and a specialist in the history of clothing. Her article examines the reaction of Aleksandr Benois, a leader and theoretician of Mir iskusstva, to the fashion show of the French couturier, Paul Poiret, which took place in Russia in October 1911.

Vladimir Lapshin (Moscow) The exhibition prose. Observations on collecting,the market and certain criteria for successful exhibitions.

Lapshin is a Doctor of Art and a leading specialist with the Institute of Theory and History of Fine Arts (part of the Russian Academy of Arts). He analyses the exhibiting techniques of Mir iskusstva artists and looks at their activity in the art market in comparison with other contemporary art associations.

Andrei Tolstoi (Moscow) Mir iskusstva and French painting.

The author is a Candidate of Art and a specialist in links between Russian and French art in the XIX and XX centuries. He compares two well-known Mir iskusstva members evaluations of French art and their professional contacts with French artists at the turn of this century. One is Mir iskusstvas main ideologue, Aleksandr Benois from St. Petersburg, and the other is the Moscow artist and critic, Igor Grabar.



Iurii Molok (Moscow) An artist with picturesque hearing: a visit to Dimitrii Bouchene.

The art critic and graphics expert recollects a visit to one of the last Mir iskusstva artists, Dimitrii Bouchene, in Paris at the beginning of the 1990s.


Ekaterina Andreeva (St. Petersburg) Five drawings by Mstislav Dobuzhinskii from the former Argutinskii-Dolgorukov collection.

The art-critic and employee of the State Russian Museum examines a folder of hoax drawings by Mstislav Dobuzhinskii, executed in the styles of Antoine Vatteau, Rembrandt and Claude Lorrain.


Elizaveta Plavinskaia (Moscow) The elements: a fortress of norms and a thirst for freedom.

The author analyses the image of the natural elements and their conflict with efforts to achieve harmony and calm in the paintings and graphics of three fundamental Mir iskusstva artists - Aleksandr Benois, Lev Bakst and Konstatin Somov.

Aleksandr Iakimovich (Moscow) Benois and Diagilev: the Apollo and Dionysius of Mir iskusstva

Iakimovich is a Doctor of Art and a specialist in XX century art. He interprets the role of Benois and Diagilev in the development of the Mir iskusstva movement as a struggle between rationality and irrationality, evoking the spirit of Nietzsche, who viewed the
universe as a confrontation between Apollo and Dionysius.

Private Collections

A list of original lithographs, wood engravings and etchings of Russian artists from editions of the journal Mir iskusstva (18991904). The collector, Mikhail Zelikman, lists together and provides comments on all the original engravings published in editions of Mir iskusstva.

Mir iskusstva pieces in private collections.

Rare and little-known works from private collections in Moscow, as well as Paris, Cologne and New York.

Collection favourite

Natalia Osminskaia (Moscow).

Open-air painter of the Naval Headquarters An article about the famous seascape painter of the latter half of the XIX century, Aleksei Bogoliubov. It is illustrated with some of his lesser-known works from several private collections.

The Market

Fedor Kruger (Moscow) A fragment from a lost panorama.

This article discusses the recently-discovered fragment of a panorama painted by the master of Russian battle-painting at the turn of the century, Francis Roubaud. The panorama decorated the Church of Glory in Tiflis (Tbilisi) in Georgia.

Sofia Pokrovskaia (Moscow) Semiramida of the North thimble glasses.

An article about unique gold thimble glasses from Catherine the Greats time. The appearance of this kind of item on the Moscow antiques market is nothing less than sensational.

An illustrated review of the most interesting items on the antiquarian markets of Moscow and St. Petersburg in autumn 1998.

Sales of Mir iskusstva works at foreign auctions over the last few years.


Elena Iurova (Moscow) Ladys evening bags.

Iurova, an expert and collector of Russian embroidery, presents us with two unique handbags: one which was embroidered according to a sketch by Konstantin Somov; and another, which has been attributed to the Russian avant-garde artist, Aleksandra Ekster.

Ellen Alexander (Greenwich) XVII and XVIII century fans.

An English collector presents her unique collection of fans, which forms the basis for the collection of the Greenwich Fan Museum, the only officially registered museum of its kind in the world. Translation from English by Andrei Alksnis.

Aleksandr Cherviakov (Moscow). A gadget for wafting cool air.

The senior specialist from Moscows Ostankino Estate Museum traces the history of the fan in XVIII-XIX century Russia, based on examples from the Museums collection.

The Secrets of Seduction.

Fragments from the album, Les Flacons de la Seduction. Lart du Parfum au XVIIIe siecle by Ghislaine Pillivuyt, a book dedicated to the cuisine of seduction and attraction in the XVIII century (aromatic and cosmetic substances, beauty-spots, etc.). Translation from French by Andrei Tolstoi.


Max Friedlander Chapters from the book Genuine Article and Fake.

For the first time, chapters on Expert Opinion and Fakes from the book by the famous Austrian art
critic and authority. Translation from German and introductory article by Kirill Svetliakov.



Reviews of art exhibitions.


Reviews of editions on art.


A review of the most interest sales on the foreign antiquarian market.


Chronicles of journeys

Mikhail Milchik (St. Petersburg) Helsinki.

Milchik, a Candidate of Architectural History, gives an account of some of the artistic sights of Finlands capital city.
Artur Rondo (Moscow). Neo-romance meets the Golden Age. Notes on several Russian art exhibitions in Helsinki in 1998

Chronicles of crime.


A review of several cases of art theft in Russia from mid-1998


Tatiana Vergun (Peterhof, near St. Petersburg) The Benois Family Museum at Peterhof is ten years old.

The head of the museum presents the Benois Family Museum (the Peterhof State Museum), relating how it was established and details of its unique collections.

1 A movement in Russian art which translates literally as World of Art.

2 A Candidate is the holder of a first higher degree, roughly equivalent to a qualification between a Masters degree and PhD.


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